Battle of Vimy Ridge 8–12 April 1917


Map Code: Ax00200

As part of the wider battle for Arras, the Canadians were tasked with capturing the German vantage point of Vimy Ridge. Having refined a number of field combat tactics after the chaos at the Somme, British and Canadian troops came into the battle with a much more focussed approach. A rolling barrage of artillery would advance slowly ahead of infantry, who had been retrained to adopt a formation whereby machine guns, grenade troops and rifles provided efficient support for each platoon. Detailed reconnaissance of the area had been undertaken, and mines had been excavated which, when blown, would destroy German defences whilst creating supply trenches across the battlefield. In the early morning of 9 April after heavy blanket artillery fire, the rolling barrage proceeded with good results. The Canadian 4th division suffered heavy casualties due to an unscathed section of the German defences, however the battle was ultimately an Allied success.

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